05-19-2016, 02:12 PM
#1
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I have a few thoughts I would like to share on brushes and was curious if anyone has similar or differing views. Recently, I have been trying some larger brushes, taller lofts, wider blooming knots and sometimes feel that the experience of lathering on the face falls short. One feeling is that the badger hair for me feels the best, especially on the building phase of the face lathering when the hairs are supported by plenty of soap (lather). I do enjoy using a couple brushes that are on the smallish end, 22mm and 24mm but lately, more brushes are in the 26mm size. It seems like the bigger I go, I don't like the feeling of using an excellent brush, nice construction, quality hair, with only a bit of product in the breach.

Let's say you have a brush and you barely load the soap and then go the face, you can lose the lather in the lower part of the knot and you are just wiping the wet badger knot on your skin which even with a gel tip or soft tipped hair isn't all that pleasurable to me. So if the knot if loaded more heavenly, you may encourage the knot to splay open as it becomes more full of wet, voluminous lather. Now you have the lather being carried by your knot, but you don't get the feeling of your face being exfoliated more by hair, but the hair is hidden underneath lots of lather.

This may be a different point but I do 2 passes minimum and sometimes 3 passes plus cleanup. When it comes to choosing a brush, if I know I am only going to do a quick shave with only a day or two facial hair growth, I will likely choose a synthetic. It doesn't seem like I get much fun out of using a nice badger for only a couple passes on minimal hair growth. I guess it seems right to really use my badger brushes and experience the feeling of the hair tips, density, splay, backbone on the skin over the course of 3 passes. The skin gets more sensitive after a more aggressive first and second pass. Personally, it is pleasant that if you have a soft brush, your skin may not be irritated by a nice massage with the brush before the 3rd pass. I do this on areas where my beard is a bit more stiff , around the chin, below my lip and around my jaw line.


So the question is, do you think some badger brushes excel in a fuller loading and change the way it feels on the face?

Cheers!  Shy

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 05-19-2016, 02:28 PM
#2
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I prefer any brush I use to be loaded to the hilt.


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 05-19-2016, 02:44 PM
#3
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I load ALL of my brushes like it's the last shave I'll ever have. 'Wasting soap' is not in my vocabulary.

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 05-19-2016, 02:56 PM
#4
  • Gabe
  • Senior Member
  • Arizona
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Quote:
(05-19-2016, 02:28 PM)merkur man Wrote: I prefer any brush I use to be loaded to the hilt.


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(05-19-2016, 02:44 PM)primotenore Wrote: I load ALL of my brushes like it's the last shave I'll ever have. 'Wasting soap' is not in my vocabulary.
+1.

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 05-19-2016, 03:49 PM
#5
  • kav
  • Banned
  • east of the sun,west of the moon
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I'm THE GUY at those wine tasting parties; the one who doesn't swirl his glass to create critically eyed tears, sniff before sipping and then swirling  it in my open mouth mimicking a horse performing 'phleman' - that curling of lips and interpreting pheromones. I've NEVER tasted blackcurrents, French truffles or chocolate.
If it hasn't corked  it's either good, great or GOOD GOD where can I buy some? and I know enough to match a wine with food.
My lathering is just as uncouth; a recreation of Mickey Mouse conjuring bucket carrying brooms. I always do 4 passes unless interrupted by earthquake or UPS.
Out of Chaos I venture impeccably turned out. "Never let them see you coming".

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 05-19-2016, 03:52 PM
#6
  • EricM
  • Senior Member
  • Encinitas, CA
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The commitment to use one soap for an entire month resulted in me loading up my brush as I never had before.  I've never had better shaves!  

Eric

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 05-19-2016, 03:54 PM
#7
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(05-19-2016, 02:28 PM)merkur man Wrote: I prefer any brush I use to be loaded to the hilt.


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Like there's no tomorrow Thumbsup

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 05-19-2016, 04:02 PM
#8
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(05-19-2016, 02:12 PM)zaclikestoshave Wrote: I have a few thoughts I would like to share on brushes and was curious if anyone has similar or differing views. Recently, I have been trying some larger brushes, taller lofts, wider blooming knots and sometimes feel that the experience of lathering on the face falls short. One feeling is that the badger hair for me feels the best, especially on the building phase of the face lathering when the hairs are supported by plenty of soap (lather). I do enjoy using a couple brushes that are on the smallish end, 22mm and 24mm but lately, more brushes are in the 26mm size. It seems like the bigger I go, I don't like the feeling of using an excellent brush, nice construction, quality hair, with only a bit of product in the breach.

Let's say you have a brush and you barely load the soap and then go the face, you can lose the lather in the lower part of the knot and you are just wiping the wet badger knot on your skin which even with a gel tip or soft tipped hair isn't all that pleasurable to me. So if the knot if loaded more heavenly, you may encourage the knot to splay open as it becomes more full of wet, voluminous lather. Now you have the lather being carried by your knot, but you don't get the feeling of your face being exfoliated more by hair, but the hair is hidden underneath lots of lather.

This may be a different point but I do 2 passes minimum and sometimes 3 passes plus cleanup. When it comes to choosing a brush, if I know I am only going to do a quick shave with only a day or two facial hair growth, I will likely choose a synthetic. It doesn't seem like I get much fun out of using a nice badger for only a couple passes on minimal hair growth. I guess it seems right to really use my badger brushes and experience the feeling of the hair tips, density, splay, backbone on the skin over the course of 3 passes. The skin gets more sensitive after a more aggressive first and second pass. Personally, it is pleasant that if you have a soft brush, your skin may not be irritated by a nice massage with the brush before the 3rd pass. I do this on areas where my beard is a bit more stiff , around the chin, below my lip and around my jaw line.


So the question is, do you think some badger brushes excel in a fuller loading and change the way it feels on the face?

Cheers!  Shy

Zack, you're describing my experience to a T.  I have begun to gravitate toward larger, denser badger brushes (26-28 mm) because they feel awesome, but I can't make great lather with them (and have them feel great doing it) without loading enough soap for 3-4+ passes.  Ironically, I have become a 2 pass and touch up shaver, and especially during the week I find myself reaching for my synthetics, which take less time loading and lathering to make the necessary amount.  I honestly don't care that much about wasting soap but every time I use one of my good badgers, that's what I'm doing.  It's a good thing I have tons of soap...

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 05-19-2016, 04:08 PM
#9
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I load til I can't lift my arm!

Seriously tho I am a VERY heavy loader of my soaps.

I enjoy very thick dense hydrated lather.

Funny thing is my soaps don't go anywhere!

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 05-19-2016, 04:12 PM
#10
  • kav
  • Banned
  • east of the sun,west of the moon
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Soap is like coat hangers and guppies. You put two in the closet or aquarium and in a week they number in the dozens.

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 05-19-2016, 04:43 PM
#11
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
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(05-19-2016, 02:56 PM)Gabe Wrote:
Quote:
(05-19-2016, 02:28 PM)merkur man Wrote: I prefer any brush I use to be loaded to the hilt.


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(05-19-2016, 02:44 PM)primotenore Wrote: I load ALL of my brushes like it's the last shave I'll ever have. 'Wasting soap' is not in my vocabulary.
+1.

+2.

I would add, in reply to zacklikestoshave; I've come to rejoice in the luxurious feeling of soft, dense badger hair loaded with quality soap when making lather on my face. It eases the awareness of chronic pain in other areas of my body that have troubled me for the last dozen years. Face lathering with mid to large size knots is a personal gift of feel-good I receive daily. I want to linger on every moment every day. If I'm going to do three plus passes I want it to feel equally luxurious on each lathering. Furthermore, the larger the knot, the bigger the feel. Why wouldn't I want to get as much of it as I possibly could? Say, wait. This is beginning to sound like some sort of a drug or something. It makes sense... it seems logical, and has probably been confirmed with empirical evidence - Chris, speak to me, here -  that more of a good feeling feels good, and I want as much of it as I can have while I can... Gotta get a bigger brush - gotta get a bigger brush... So yes, to answer your question - So the question is, do you think some badger brushes excel in a fuller loading and change the way it feels on the face? - for the reasons cited above, a bigger, denser, more luxurious feeling brush - properly loaded as noted above - increases the pleasurable sensation on my face.

Biggrin

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 05-19-2016, 11:13 PM
#12
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Another one who 'loads' heavily with my soaps. However, I use shave-sticks and apply a very, very liberal amount so I get to spend much more time on my face than normal.
I have never had any issues with NOT feeling the 2-Band badger knots that I use on my face while lathering.
Personally, this might be the best part of shaving, for me and I wouldn't have it any other way. ( I just don't enjoy synthetics.)

If you are worried about feeling the knot with a very loaded brush, then you might consider getting a Shavemac D-01 2-Band or any good badger knot set at a lower loft to get much more scrub. The Epsilon 2-Band 50mm lofted brushes would be excellent for this. Shy

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 05-20-2016, 02:42 AM
#13
  • Rufus
  • Senior Member
  • Greater Toronto Area
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I don't like to scrimp on the amount of cream I load my brush with, be it badger, boar or synthetic.  Too little lather really affects the quality of my shave since it results in less cushioning and greater irritation.  As for badger brushes, my ideal knot size is 22-24; anything larger than 25/26 is just too unwieldy.  Also, I don't like overly dense or very firm knots, which feel like a brick of badger on my face and tend to hold onto lather; the Simpson Chubby line being a prime example.  My favourite brush is a shavemac with a finest or 3-band Silvertip knot no bigger than 24mm with a 52mm loft, generously loaded with TOBS shaving cream.  The face feel is perfect and the lather is luxurious.

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 05-20-2016, 03:53 AM
#14
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I load a brush like there is no tomorrow, soap is relatively cheap in the scheme of things.

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 05-20-2016, 06:21 AM
#15
  • DJL813
  • Senior Member
  • Darien, CT
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I agree with the majority on this thread and load my brushes with lots of product regardless if it's boar or badger.....then apply to face and work into lather....seems to work every time.

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 05-20-2016, 06:38 AM
#16
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(05-20-2016, 02:42 AM)Rufus Wrote: I don't like to scrimp on the amount of cream I load my brush with, be it badger, boar or synthetic.  Too little lather really affects the quality of my shave since it results in less cushioning and greater irritation.  As for badger brushes, my ideal knot size is 22-24; anything larger than 25/26 is just too unwieldy.  Also, I don't like overly dense or very firm knots, which feel like a brick of badger on my face and tend to hold onto lather; the Simpson Chubby line being a prime example.  My favourite brush is a shavemac with a finest or 3-band Silvertip knot no bigger than 24mm with a 52mm loft, generously loaded with TOBS shaving cream.  The face feel is perfect and the lather is luxurious.

My preference is very similar to yours! I prefer 24mm knots which is reflected in all my brushes with the exception of one 26mm.
Prefer brushes with medium density and backbone, and good splay.
Don't really enjoy a too stiff brush with strong backbone and a short loft, i.e Chubby 1
Load heavy, enough for 4 passes since I do 3 passes and then I cover my face with cream and let it sit until I am done cleaning up my gear. Tends to cool things down! And when using a high quality soap/cream with natural ingredients, this can be very beneficial to the skin.
For this reason my favorite brush is The Varlet Beehive!

To answer the OP, yes some brushes can change the experience. For me, splay is very important and so TV beehive gives just the splay I am looking for without being overlay dense! When heavily loaded with cream, this brush feels nothing short of pure LUXURY, tips become extremely soft and the knot opens up while maintaining decent backbone

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 05-20-2016, 06:56 AM
#17
  • kav
  • Banned
  • east of the sun,west of the moon
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There seems to be some consensus lathered soap not used is wasted. I merely gently squeeze my brush and return the unused soap back to the container. With Savonerrie du Moulin it goes onto my face for a poor man's facial. If my pucks have been 'repotted' into a bowl this has the added benefit of slowly form fitting milled soaps. I have never experienced any degradation in soap quality. I have no idea if this is 'penny wise and pound foolish' and how many additional shaves I gain. I remember my first puck of  Mitchells so used  lasted  6 months before my soap menu expanded.

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 05-20-2016, 08:58 AM
#18
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I don't really worry about wasting soap considering how inexpensive it is. I squeeze out leftover lather and leave it on my face while I am cleaning up my brush and things. I rinse it off before I do the aftershave routine.

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 05-20-2016, 06:47 PM
#19
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I always load my brush, so it becomes so heavy, that I almost will drop if I don't user both hands to hold the brush  Tongue

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 05-21-2016, 04:39 AM
#20
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I puck lather so my brush is maxed out every time I shave. Having. 22-24mm boar brush I find that I don't rinse much lather at all down the drain while doing this , I'm happy.

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